Mount Bures
Local government


Victoria County History



Janet Cooper (Editor)

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'Mount Bures: Local government', A History of the County of Essex: Volume 10: Lexden Hundred (Part) including Dedham, Earls Colne and Wivenhoe (2001), pp. 74. URL: Date accessed: 26 November 2014.


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In 1273-4 the lord of the manor held view of frankpledge, the assizes of bread and of ale, and gallows which probably stood on high land near Abrams farm beside the road to Chappel. In 1274-5 the earl of Cornwall's bailiffs did not allow the king's escheators into the manor. (fn. 85) Grants of free warren in Mount Bures manor were made from 1292. (fn. 86) Surviving court rolls from 1393 record courts baron and leet. Between 1446 and 1553 numbers sworn were usually from 20 to 30, between 1554 and 1645 usually from 10 to 20, and from 1646 until 1687 they were usually fewer than 10. Two constables were recorded from 1505 and aletasters from 1681. Business included transfers of copyholds, as well as ordering repairs of buildings, the removal of obstructions, and the scouring of ditches. In 1499 there was one case of bloodshed, and two in 1551. In 1531 the archery butts were decayed. From the 17th century most of the business was routine administration, (fn. 87) and the manor court was still being held in 1813. (fn. 88)

There was a village pound close to Rumps at Garners Tye in 1504. (fn. 89)

In 1795, during the Napoleonic Wars, Mount Bures was combined with 6 neighbouring parishes to provide 3 men to serve in the navy. (fn. 90) A Tyburn ticket was issued to a parishioner in 1814. In 1823 the parish was accused of failing to repair the highway. (fn. 91)

The poor were said to be well provided for in 1670. (fn. 92) In 1803 the parish officers bought a cottage, Akermans, later called Solliers, as a workhouse. It was sold in 1841. (fn. 93)

Expenditure on poor relief in Mount Bures was always one of the highest per head in Lexden hundred. In 1776 costs were £27 and in 1783-5 averaged £85 a year. (fn. 94) Expenditure rose to £448 in 1801, equivalent to 35s. 10d. a head of population, and then fluctuated between £169 and £295 between 1802 and 1816, before rising to £355 in 1817, equivalent to 26s. 7d. a head. (fn. 95) It then ranged between £421 and £661 in 1818-32, equivalent to 32s. 2d. and 50s. 10d. a head, before falling to £397 in 1834, equivalent to 30s. 4d. (fn. 96)


85 Rot. Hund. (Rec. Com.) i. 139, 155; McMaster and Evans, Mount Bures, 47.
86 Morant, Essex, ii. 225; Cal. Pat. 1345-8, 529.
87 E.R.O., D/DMa M29; D/DU 103/1-9.
88 Ibid. D/DRc M35.
89 Ibid. D/DMa M29; McMaster and Evans, Mount Bures, 99, 140.
90 E.R. liv. 42.
91 E.R.O., Q/RSt 111; ibid. Q/SBb 472/80.
92 Ibid. Q/SR 423/43.
93 McMaster and Evans, Mount Bures, 98; E.R.O., Acc. 514 (uncat.), Deeds of former workhouse, 1802-89.
94 Ibid. Q/CR 1/1.
95 Ibid. Q/CR 1/9/16.
96 Ibid. Q/CR 1/12; Rep. Sel. Cttee. on Poor Rate Returns, 1822-4, H.C. 334 Suppl. App. p. 81 (1825), iv; ibid. 1825-9, H.C. 83, p. 61 (1830-1), xi; ibid. 1830-4, H.C. 444, p. 60 (1835), xlvii.